Do you leave subsurf modifier unapplied for animation?

I was wondering if, when you create a subsurfed character for animation, is it generally better to apply the SubSurf modifier prior to rigging, animating, etc., or to just leave the modifier unapplied for all eternity? Thanks.

I leave it unapplied, that way you still have access to Levels for both display and render. I suppose if you’re exporting it may be necessary to apply, but then I’d apply it in a copy of the file, not the original. Same goes for MultiRes etc.

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Thankfully every rig that I’ve used has never had the subsurf applied to it, as on my relatively low end machine (1.2gig / 512meg / Geforce 6200) XP box it makes a huge difference in performance when interactively animating / posing a character and for animation playback. I usually have it turned off for interactive display unless I’m doing facial animation in which case I’ll set it as low as possible.

Mike